To the recipient, bubble packaging is like the cardboard box a child's Christmas toy comes in: something to play with when bored with the item that it once wrapped. To the shipper, however, bubble packing is often a cost-cutting, more resilient and more flexible alternative to foam or tissue packaging.
Bubble Wrap packaging consists of top and bottom layers of thin, low-density polyethylene with pockets of air sandwiched between them. These air pockets protect items wrapped in the packaging from shock, vibration and abrasion. It is strong, lightweight and can be wrapped around the item it protects and used to fill in the space between the item and its container. Often, less bubble packing is required than comparable materials, thus offering money savings.
Bubble packaging comes in three basic types:
- Rolls of bubble packing. Available in thicknesses from 1/16-inch to ½-inch, rolls may be either pre-perforated for easy separation into smaller pieces or without perforations to be cut as needed.
- Bubble Wrap envelopes and mailers; conventional mailers lined with Bubble Wrap.
- Bubble bags, into which shipped items may be inserted and which often feature closures similar to those found on reclosable sandwich bags.
Use the right Bubble Wrap for the jobBubble packing comes in a range of thicknesses and strengths. Specialty wraps, such as anti-static wrap designed to protect electronic equipment and wraps designed to stick to themselves only or to the items they protect without leaving a residue, also are available.
Keep your Bubble Wrap packaging organized and manageableOn the recipient's end, loose Bubble Wrap gets underfoot, wadded up and popped, then thrown away. On the shipper's end, unruly bubble packing can lead to slowed production and costly shipping delays.
When in doubt, consult an expertWith all of the bubble packing choices available, choosing the right wrap for the right package can still be a sticking point.
- Look at the items you ship the most and buy the wrap best suited to that item. Consider specialty wraps, but only if your budget allows for it, and if the shipping needs of your products dictate the use of it.
- Keep your packaging area as organized as possible. If you ship several kinds of items, create a separate staging area for each item and its corresponding wrapping.